Chh HC | Bail cannot be granted if accusations are found to be prima facie true under S. 43(D) of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967

Chhattisgarh High Court: A Division Bench of Prashant Kumar Mishra and Gautam Chourdiya, JJ. upheld the NIA Court’s order rejecting the appellant’s prayer under Section 21(4) of the National Investigation Agency Act,2008 for his bail under Section 439 of Criminal Procedural Code, 1973 (CrPC) after he had been charged under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 (UAPA).

In the instant case, the police found banners containing anti-national contents, naxal pamphlets, explosive material like tiffin bombs and few wires on 28-01-2017 on the road towards village Kandoli with the names of the spokespersons of the organisation banned by the Government of India. On further investigation, the police of Darbha also seized such materials in their area. Thereafter on checking the appellant’s email ID, mobile, laptop, etc. he was found to have been propagating naxal activities through blogging on social media sites which he himself admitted.

The Counsel for the appellant, Y.M. Choudhary submitted that neither the diary statements of the appellant nor his recovery showed his naxal involvement. Further, the aforesaid CPI (Maoist) was banned on 27-08-2009 so anything done on its part prior to it was not an offence. Moreover, any blog or post in the State of Karnataka would not constitute an offence under the provisions of Chattisgarh Special Public Security Act, 2005. Thereby the Counsel pleaded that the appellant is entitled to be released on bail.

However, the Counsel Fouzia Mirza for the State contended that the appellant has been a member of over ground cadre of CPI (Maoist) not only before 22-06-2009 but thereafter also. He had deleted certain incriminating articles from his blog Abhay Naxal Revolution recovered during data analysis. Further, the writings found so far on the anti-national contents have all been identified to have been written by the same person. All this makes him not entitled to be released on bail.

Taking view of the above case, the Court observed that the materials collected by the investigating officer furnish reasonable grounds to believe accusations to be prima facie true, thereby attracting sub-section (5) of Section 43(D) of UAPA, 1967. Thus all the criminal appeals were dismissed.[Abhay Nayak v. State of Chattisgarh, CRA No. 1213 of 2019, decided on 20-12-2019]

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